Stability and sterility of a recombinant factor VIII concentrate prepared for continuous infusion administration

Asim F. Belgaumi, Christian C. Patrick, Steven R. Deitcher

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14 Citations (Scopus)


Minipumps may facilitate cost-effective and convenient continuous infusion (CI) therapy for severe hemophilia A. This study evaluated the in vitro sterility, ability to support bacterial growth, and specific activity stability of a recombinant factor VIII (FVIII; Bioclate(TM), Centeon) delivered by simulated CI at a variety of temperatures and after the addition of heparin or antibiotic. Closed system CIs of Bioclate(TM) (89.5 IU/ml) with and without heparin were sampled and cultured over a 6 day period. Bioclate(TM) (53.7 IU/ml) with and without heparin or vancomycin was inoculated with 102-105 CFU/ml of S. aureus, S. epidermidis, Escherichia coli, E. cloacae, or Y. enterocolitica and assessed by quantitative culture after 1 and 3 days. The stability of Bioclate(TM) (50, 100, and 250 IU/ml) at three temperatures (21°C, 37°C, and 39°C) with and without heparin or vancomycin was tested over a period of 28 days. FVIII activity was measured in triplicate by a chromogenic assay (Coamatic® Factor VIII, Chromogenix) and purity evaluated by Western blot. No bacterial growth was detected during CI of FVIII for up to 6 days. Following bacterial inoculation, there was rapid growth (>3 log increase) of all tested bacterial species except S. aureus which only displayed a 1 log expansion at 3 days. The addition of heparin containing 9.45 μg/U benzyl alcohol had no effect on bacterial growth. The addition of vancomycin caused a modest suppression of S. aureus growth but not of E. coli. Diluent alone did not support bacterial growth. Neither concentration, increased temperature, nor the addition of heparin or vancomycin had a significant effect on FVIII activity stability. Samples retained >75% baseline activity for between 3 and 7 days, except the infusion of Bioclate(TM) 50 IU/ml plus heparin maintained at 21°C which remained stable for 28 days. Western blot analysis supported the activity assay findings. Standard and concentrated preparations of Bioclate(TM) are suitable for CI when delivered by the MiniMed® 404-SP minipump. Because of the observed nutritive capability of this FVIII concentrate for sustaining bacterial growth, any contamination could result in systemic infection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-18
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Hematology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Continuous infusion
  • Factor VIII
  • Hemophilia
  • Minipumps
  • Prophylaxis


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